The world’s largest moth has been spotted in Washington state, which is some 2,000 miles away from its natural habitat in the tropics.
Its wingspan measure 10 inches, the previous record holder clocked in at 9.8 inches, and was found hanging on to a garage door in Bellevue that sits on the eastern shore of Lake Washington.
Known as an atlas moth, the insect is a federally quarantined pest, which makes it illegal to purchase or sell the moths in any form, from eggs to adults, without a permit.
The Washington homeowner reported it to Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA), which is urging residents to be on the lookout to help them determine if there are others in the area.
The atlas moth can be detrimental to US native vegetation because it only consumes leaves of host plants rather than flowers, woody stems and roots, like other moths.